The revised regulations on extramural investigators’ financial conflicts of interest have been published in the Federal Register. The final rule is based on input NIH received from the community.
The revised regulations, as outlined by NIH’s Sally Rockey, now:
- Require investigators to disclose to their institutions all of their significant financial interests related to their institutional responsibilities as opposed to only those that they see as related to Public Health Service (PHS)-supported research.
- Lower the monetary threshold for disclosure of significant financial interests, from $10,000 to $5,000.
- Require institutions to report to the PHS awarding component more comprehensively on identified financial conflicts of interest and how they are being managed.
- Require institutions to make certain information concerning identified financial conflicts of interest held by senior/key personnel accessible to the public.
- Require investigators to be trained on the regulations and their institution’s financial conflict of interest policy at designated times.
NIH is developing training materials, which will be posted on its Financial Conflict of Interest Web site. For more details, visit the “quick links.”
Last November, I announced that NIGMS was conducting an assessment of its Large-Scale Collaborative Project Awards (glue grant) program and solicited your input.
We have now posted the report of this assessment, which is based on an analysis of input from six different sources, including comments we received from the scientific community.
The assessment’s conclusion is that the glue grant program has had mixed results. All of the projects accomplished some of their goals, and some of the projects had a substantial impact in their fields. However, the assessment also found that the program as a whole had not achieved outcomes commensurate with the scope of the awards and the overall investment in them.
The panel members felt that “the successes and challenges of the Glue Grant Awards Program provide a useful guide for the development of future programs.” While they recommended discontinuing the program as it currently exists, they did not recommend abandoning all support for collaborative research, even in the face of tighter budgets. Rather, they suggested a number of ways to improve support for larger-scale projects and indicated that these projects cannot be accomplished with R01 grant support alone.
Last week, I presented the outcomes of the assessment to our Advisory Council, which embraced the recommendations of the assessment panel and encouraged NIGMS to develop alternative mechanisms to support the varied accomplishments that were supported through the glue grant program. We will take the report and Council’s advice into consideration as we develop future plans for funding collaborative research.
The Feedback Loop blog, with its 165 posts and 418 comments, has become an important tool for communicating with you.
As the blog enters its third year, we will continue to use it to share news of NIGMS funding opportunities, meetings and activities, job openings and grant-related changes. But, as with any blog, we really want to generate posts that spark an open dialogue.
Tell us what posts you want to read by e-mailing me, adding a comment here or using the “Suggest a Post” option near the top of the site. Is there a policy or process we can demystify, a trend we can explain or an area of funding we should highlight? You can propose any topic that might interest our broader NIGMS grantee and applicant audience. While you’re at it, you can also tell us what you don’t want to read about!
NIH is seeking broad input from the scientific community on challenges and opportunities in single-cell analysis, a topic of great interest and relevance to many NIGMS grantees and applicants. Please help NIH shape its future programs in this emerging research area by sending in your opinions. The request for information (RFI) asks for responses on topics including:
- Current conceptual, technical and/or methodological challenges in the field;
- Major biomedical research questions that can be addressed by single-cell analysis; and
- The highest priority tools and resources needed to move forward.
We hope you’ll take the time to weigh in with your opinions and specific examples between now and the March 18 response deadline.
Let me know if you would like to learn more about trans-NIH activities in this area, as I’m a member of the group that issued this RFI—the Single Cell Analysis Working Group of the NIH Common Fund (formerly known as the NIH Roadmap), which provides strategic planning, coordination and support for programs that cut across NIH institutes and centers.